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Wesleyan to Hold Inaugural Frank Bayard/Kumaran Nair Economics Forum on October 10

Buckhannon, WV, September 24, 2019 — “The West Virginia Economy and Well-Being in the Mountain State” will launch the Thomas H. Albinson School of Business at West Virginia Wesleyan College’s Frank Bayard/Kumaran Nair Economics Forum on Thursday, Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. in Culpepper Auditorium in the Virginia Thomas Law Center for the Performing Arts. The forum is free and open to the public and will serve as the kick-off event for Wesleyan’s Homecoming weekend.

The presentation will feature four West Virginia University distinguished faculty members from the College of Business and Economics, including Dr. Ryan Angus, assistant professor of entrepreneurship, Dr. John Deskins, associate professor of economics, assistant dean for outreach and engagement, and director of the Bureau of Business and Economic Research, Dr. Joshua Hall, professor of economics, chair of the department of economics and director of the Center for Free Enterprise, and Dr. Jane Ruseski, associate professor of economics.

Dr. Angus earned his Ph.D. in entrepreneurship and strategy from the University of Utah. He has ten years of industry experience working for a Fortune 500 medical device manufacturer, a regional economic development agency, and a medical device entrepreneur. His academic research has been published in Strategic Management Journal and Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal.

Dr. Deskins leads the Bureau of Business & Economic Research’s effort to serve the state of West Virginia by providing rigorous economic analysis and macroeconomic forecasting to business leaders and policymakers across the state. He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Tennessee. Deskins’ academic research has focused on economic development, small business economics and government tax and expenditure policy, primarily at the US state level. His work has appeared in outlets such as Contemporary Economic Policy, Public Finance Review, Economic Development Quarterly, Small Business Economics, Public Budgeting and Finance, Regional Studies, Annals of Regional Science, Tax Notes, and State Tax Notes, as well as in books published by Cambridge University Press and the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy. He has testified before the United States Senate, the United States House of Representatives, and the West Virginia Legislature. He has served as principal investigator or co-principal investigator on more than $1 million in funded research.

Dr. Hall earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Ohio University and his Ph.D. from West Virginia University. Prior to returning to his alma mater, he was the Elbert H. Neese, Jr. Professor of Economics at Beloit College. He is a past president of the Association of Private Enterprise Education and also a Senior Fellow at the Fraser Institute. A co-author of the widely-cited Economic Freedom of the World annual report, Dr. Hall is also author or co-author of over 100 articles in journals such as Public Choice, Contemporary Economic Policy, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Urban Studies, Southern Economic Journal, Public Finance Review, and Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory.

Dr. Ruseski is an applied microeconomist with interests in health economics, health financing and policy, sports economics, and industrial organization. Much of her current research studies the socioeconomic determinants of health and (un) healthy behaviors; the effect of health behaviors on outcomes, including chronic health conditions, obesity, and health disparities; the mechanisms underlying health behaviors; and the effect of public policy on health. Dr. Ruseski has published in academic journals including Contemporary Economic Policy, Health Economics, Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics, Southern Economic Journal, BE Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, and Journal of Sports Economics. She is a co-editor of Contemporary Economic Policy and an associate editor of the International Journal of Sport Finance. She received her Ph.D., in economics from Johns Hopkins University.

The Bayard/Nair Economics Forum was established by gifts from alumni to honor two of Wesleyan’s most beloved faculty members. Dr. Bayard was a professor of economics from 1967 to 1983, and Dr. Nair served as a professor of economics from 1969 to 1995. Both were passionate about economics and teaching.

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